Advances in Immunostains Used in Mohs Surgery

July 2010 | Volume 9 | Issue 7 | Original Article | 760 | Copyright © July 2010

Donald R. Stranahan MD, Basil S. Cherpelis MD, Neil Alan Fenske MD, L. Frank Glass MD

In recent years, Mohs micrographic surgery (MMS) has become a widely utilized method of removal for a variety of cutaneous neoplasms. Certain clinical scenarios, however, make it difficult to visualize residual tumor cells, potentially decreasing the efficacy of the Mohs procedure. Immunohistochemical (IHC) stains are now available and are being utilized to delineate cells of interest intraoperatively when routinely stained slides are equivocal. While useful, IHC stains have not gained wide acceptance as an adjunct to MMS, particularly due to increased processing time, cost and workload required. There have been multiple recent advances, however, in the utilization of IHC stains in MMS. In this article, the authors discuss recent advances in IHC stains used in MMS for the treatment of melanoma as well as nonmelanoma skin cancers, potentially making their routine use in select cases more feasible.